Tales of an Introvert: Going Back to Work

I am in the middle of a panic attack right now. Why? Because I start a new job tomorrow. A job that is not child care related. A job that requires a certain level of dress. A job that requires me to talk on the phone to angry strangers. What the hell was I thinking?

Let’s start from the top. Starting a new job is scary. Even if it’s in a field you love and have passion for. You’re suddenly in a place filled with strangers. And you know they are judging you.

That’s what we do as humans. Something new? Check it out and see if you like it. New rules and regulations. Names and faces. And the dreaded, “Let’s take a moment to go around the room and introduce ourselves.” Kill me. Seriously. Just put me out of my misery now. The only way it could get worse is if I puke or pass out. Nothing makes an impression like passing out in a pool of used coffee and oatmeal.

So, what is this job? Customer service in a call center. I had a job similar to this almost ten years ago. I wound up leaving that job for two reasons. My ex was upset I was making considerably more money than he was. He was also jealous, thinking I was cheating on him with every guy I worked with.

That all added stress to an already stressful job. Customer service is a stressful job. I know not everyone is going to be calling me hateful names. I’m really trying to not let the experiences of the past affect my outlook on this next job.
Now, let’s talk about wardrobe. From 2013 to 2016 I was a stay at home mom. And I rocked that momdrobe hard. Yoga pants and t shirts all day, everyday. Any opportunity to buy new clothes, I turned down because why would I need new clothes. I don’t go anywhere. No one comes over. I was fine. When I did get a job, I was required to wear a uniform. Red shirts and black or khaki pants and shoes, preferably sneakers. Again, I don’t need to buy clothes because I only go to work then home. At home, I changed into my t shirt and yoga pants. Now, I need business casual. What the hell does that even mean? Don’t bother looking it up on Pinterest. That’s no help. There’s no category for forty year old moms who are switching careers but still want to look like normal people. I’m literally fighting the urge to stay home because I have nothing to wear.
So, why did I take this job? Obviously, I have some problems. Anxiety is a big one. So, why would I chose a job that requires me to talk on the phone and try to calm down angry people?

Because I had to. After a month, no one else was calling me for interviews. I went to one other interview and didn’t get the job.

Totally confused by that, but whatever. Plus, it pays $11 an hour. My husband graduates in August. By then, we’ll know if we’re staying here or moving to Florida. I hope it’s Florida. But, I figure I can hold on until at least the end of the year. It’s actually more money than I was making after a year at the daycare. We were doing pretty well with the daycare income so we should be doing even better. So, bonus nachos there.
As I’m writing this, my attack is subsiding. I guess talking about it helps. My husband doesn’t quite understand that. He tries but he doesn’t get it. He’s pretty much figured out to just ask me what I need and then leave me alone to sort it out.
I’m sure I’ll figure something to wear. I’ll make my lunch tonight. And I’ll do all the things I need to get done tonight. It helps to alleviate stress and anxiety in the morning. One less thing to panic over. Honestly, that’s a type for everyone. Plan out your outfit the night before. Pack your lunch. Put your purse, bag, wallet, whatever you need to leave the house in the morning by the front door. Do all that before bed. It makes the mornings go smoother.

I’m still nervous. I’m still scared. But at least I don’t feel like crying anymore. So, I guess I’ve got that going for me.
So, here’s to new adventures. And hoping I don’t puke on someone.


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